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‘JNNURM funds reason for better public transport'

Special Correspondent

GULBARGA: Union Labour and Employment Minister M. Mallikarjuna Kharge said that the improvement seen in the public transport sector with state-of-the-art buses and modern bus-stands was possible due to funds made available under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM), entirely funded by the Centre.

Speaking after accepting an honour by the Karnataka State Road Transport Noukarara Mahamandali here on Saturday, Mr. Kharge said that the State unit of the Congress had played a pivotal role in the inclusion of Bangalore and Mysore in the JNNURM.

“Thousands of buses have been introduced by the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation with funds provided under the JNNURM. Also, new ultramodern bus-stands have come up in Bangalore and Mysore using JNNURM funds,” he said.

Mr. Kharge said there was no going back on the decision of the Centre to sanction two skill development centres for Karnataka in Bangalore and Gulbarga. It has set aside Rs. 100 crore in the 2011-12 Budget for the purpose. The State Government has also earmarked Rs. 67 crore for the proposed skill development centres. “Once the land is made available, the work on constructing the infrastructure facilities for these centres would begin,” he said.

The skill development centre would be a boon to unemployed and underemployed youths for up-scaling their skills. Mr. Kharge said that a systematic attempt to undermine the public sector understandings (PSUs) was on. It was the duty of the employees working in the PSUs to defeat the designs of the forces, he said.

The KSRTC and other transport corporations in the State were PSUs and both the government and the employees should work in tandem to strengthen the organisation.

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